BEYOND Story Two
To tell you what Beta means to me, I have to go back to three years ago; right after we brought our two girls home from foster care. I had a 19 and 13 year old daughters, and loved parenting, and thought I was somewhat decent at it, and we had more than enough room, and more than enough love. We could do this. Four daughters, I was in love!
Well, four months in, and we were all tearing our hair out, trying to decide if we were even cut out for this “adoption parenting”, and because we loved them, and we thought we understood trauma,(well as much as you can, only 4 months in), why were we not getting it? Come on, it was four months already…and I loved them, but barely liked them.
Each night I couldn’t wait to put the girls to bed, jump in my own bed and cry. I did not think that I was called for this; I did not think I wanted this chaos anymore, and I thought I was ruining my entire life, my family’s life, and could not get answers on how to fix it. I wanted to fix it, the girls, their history, my life. However, as I struggled really badly, I would go to our local group and our caseworker and get ‘yep, that happens” and “you’re doing a good job”. I remember thinking What planet are you from, can you not see our life is falling apart here? I literally googled Successful adoption stories, Why Me?, Adoptions that don’t work out, Why me?, and typed in any thought about adoption that popped into my head. I knew three other families that adopted and they were okay, why weren’t we?
I had heard about blogs, but had never read one, so I am not sure how I happened across a blog written by a Beta mom, but as I started reading, I was OKAY, I was in love, and I followed links from one blog to another, all moms who were in the trenches or helping others out by writing their story. I happened across one where they were talking about this Retreat, and I was ready and wanted to sign up, and when I figured out how, I was a month too late. I think I cried. It was a month after the retreat of 2011, but I found Beta. So, unbeknownst to any of them, I waited until I could sign up for the next year, while reading every one of the blogs on the Beta sight. I could not wait to get into bed every night to read more. I would laugh, I would cry, and I would feel surrounded by woman that I didn’t even know.
When I signed up, my husband was a little nervous. He asked if it was wise flying across the US to stay with people I had never met. Well, I did meet them; they just hadn’t met me yet. When I got there, I was so overwhelmed and so crazy in love with all of the moms, and I said on the way from airport to retreat, I can’t wait to meet these moms…They are famous in my house, and they saved us. Still some of them did not know the extent in which I read their stories, but I met them and hugged them and cried with some. I met one of my favorite bloggers, and could not grasp that she was there, in front of me, because I had read her pain, and I sent her mental strength, and I loved her before she knew me, or I knew her. Now, if I have had a bad day or moment, my husband asks, do you need to go visit a beta mom. He could see the difference.
Beta women are part of a “tribe” to help others moms who are struggling, to help them out of the trenches, who tell me “I am Enough”, and Beta moms tell you “You are not Alone”! Beta is a group of women who are stronger than many, as they have had to deal with kids from hard places, with behaviors that can be extreme. However, watching and learning from them over the past two years, is what helps my family stay together with laughter and fun, in spite of all the trauma. I am going Beyond the trauma and filling needs for me, which helps my family.
Today. Every day. I'm going BEYOND.
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